Director: Kirk Jones
Writers: Nia Vardalos
Stars: Nia Vardolas, John Corbett, Michael Constantine
Genre: Romantic Comedy
Rating: PG-13 (some suggestive material)
I am not a fan of romantic comedies. I’m more of an action adventure sci-fi magic things blow up kind of girl, but there are a few exceptions to this rule and My Big Fat Greek Wedding is one of them. I watched this movie at a young age and my parents would fast forward the too raunchy parts. Why is this movie an exception to my universal hatred of anything considered a chick flick? Because my family is so much like the Portokalos family. They may not be Greek, but they’re loud and in your face and I love them to pieces–even if they can be overwhelming at times. When I heard that My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 was coming out, I was elated to see a sequel of a family classic. Going in I knew it wouldn’t ever be as great as the first one, but the nostalgia kick would be worth it.
Violence/Scary Images: This is a comedy. There isn’t much of that. The worst violence you’ll see is Paris’s little adorable Greek cousins tackling her date and Ian, Angelo, Nick, and Athena’s husband get some bruises and scrapes from helping Gus.
Language/Crude Humor: Like most romantic comedies this has some questionable humor and language. There wasn’t much swearing that I could remember. Perhaps a few usages of d*** and h***, but nothing extremely troubling. Aunt Voula likes to tell thinly veiled sex stories that are not for young ears. Some of the other family members make a few sexual remarks as well referring to wedding nights. Ian and Toula give each other flirtatious remarks implying the want for sex. Ian, Nick, Angelo, and Athena’s husband talk about the scarring experience of seeing Gus naked.
Spiritual Content: The Portokalos family is Greek Orthodox, so they do go to church and the wedding is performed by a priest. The Greek gods are also mentioned.
Sexual Content: Ian and Toula attempt to have sex in their vehicle after a date, but they’re interrupted. A few of the wedding dresses are immodest, and Nikki unzips her top halfway to reveal her cleavage to a man. Because of his hip, Gus falls and gets stuck in the tub and he’s naked except for a towel over his privates. One of the family members turns out to be a homosexual (which he wasn’t in the original film). Nothing happens between the two men, but it’s implied something has. What bothers me most about this is that the relationship is sanctioned as okay. This disappointed me greatly.
Drug/Alcohol Reference: The Portokalos family drinks on several occasions, especially at the wedding reception. Gus, his brother, and Taki get very drunk at one point.
Other Negative Content: Some of the family manipulate each other to persuade them to do what they want.
Positive Content: The theme of this movie is marriage longevity. It’s very popular to speak of newlyweds and young love, but what about keeping a marriage lasting through children and aging? My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 tackles this. Gus and Maria have been married for fifty years (even though their marriage certificate technically says they weren’t). They’ve had babies together. They’ve watched each other grow old. They’ve had to deal with the consequences of that. Maria didn’t get to travel. They deal with each other’s snoring and medical needs and other annoying habits. But in the end, they still love each other. My grandparents were married sixty-eight years. They had many hardships and flaws, but in the end they too loved each other. My grandfather wrote my nanni love poems until he died.
Ian and Toula learn how to keep their marriage young by going out on dates again. They’re both so focused on their child Paris that they forget that they need attention themselves. Having a kid and being a parent is an awesome thing, but the parents need time together and they need to prioritize their needs too to keep their marriage strong.
Marriage isn’t always about being young and having spicy sex. It’s about loving your spouse when they do stupid things like when Gus refuses to propose to Maria again out of pride. It’s about being there for your lifelong partner through the trials.
Toula’s still working for the family restaurant, her daughter Paris is about to graduate, her marriage with Ian has become strained, and on top of that Gus in his search to prove he’s related to Alexander the Great discovers that the priest never signed his marriage certificate. Paris feels overwhelmed with her family being in her business and wants to go to a college out of state, but Toula wants her to go to a local college. All of these conflicts collide on the approach of a new big fat Greek wedding.
As you could probably gather from the synopsis, this movie has a lot going on. It is loaded with drama, a lot of good laughs, and wedding preparations, but also with many tender moments between family, especially with Yaya and her grandchildren. The movie was mostly comprised of subplots and the main plot felt in the background at times. It tried to say a lot and I think it got its point across, but it wasn’t as streamlined as the original film.
Many of the witty quips of Aunt Voula and the random appearances of Yaya had me laughing. The plot wasn’t extremely surprising and it mostly catered to old fans of the movie. I could see new people coming into the film feeling like they aren’t getting many of the references, but such is the nature of sequels.
I’m surprised all of the cast came back for this film, even the more obscure relatives. Each actor played their roles just like they originally did, except for Angelo who once was very attracted to women all of a sudden became attracted to men. Go figure. New faces such as Paris, her friend Bennett, and Paris’s younger cousins do well in breathing some youth into the cast. The cousins are adorable with their imitations of Gus’s obsession with relating everything to Greece.
In the end, My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 is a cute movie with a lot of good laughs and nostalgia, but it isn’t as good as the original. It wasn’t a bad film, but it didn’t wow me. It may be worth it to see in the theaters, but the only time I’ll probably see it again is on DVD/Blueray.
+ Major Nostalgia Blast for Fans of the Original Film + Lots of Laughs + Good Message about Marriage Longevity
- Mediocre Plot - Sanctioned Homosexual Relationship
The Bottom Line
In the end, My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 is a cute movie with a lot of good laughs and nostalgia, but it isn't as good as the original. It wasn't a bad film, but it didn't wow me. It may be worth it to see in the theaters, but the only time I'll probably see it again is on DVD/Blueray.